I got out of the black powder stuff a few years back
I been looking for a new flinter
Custom built from Tennessee valley or buying a 54 blue ridge long rifle round ball shooter.
I like to here pro or cons on this rifle
The Blue Ridge is Cabela's version of the Pedersoli Frontier Rifle. They are both clones of the Ted Hatfield Rifle.
It has a 39" straight barrel, and is a bit muzzle heavy. They do shoot ok, but are, like others say, a factory gun. The one issue some had was that the barrel and ramrod pipes are not pinned into/through the wood securely. Instead, the pipes have screws that attach to threads on the bottom flat of the barrel, while holding the pipe in place, with wood between. And over time, the pipes loosen. All the re-tightening of the screws will tend to pull them through the pipes.
If You can get into a semi custom rifle at a price point You can handle, I would recommend it. And I know guys who ordered rifles from Matt Avance at TVM. And were happy with what they got.
Never handled the blue ridge or a TVm... But my opinion of factory guns now are somewhat low. Since getting into the traditional game a few years ago there is no comparison to the quality. The only advantage the factory guns bring to the table is price. I see the ones on Cabela's site are about half the price of the TVM. Before I jumped into building with both feet I seriously looked at buying one of their guns. From what I've heard about them, if you can justify the $$$ go that route.
The kit gun I built is an earlier TVM. I bought the kit back in the 90's. This was back I think when Jack Garner, who started TVM owned the company. I will second a kit such as this over any factory gun. Now if you cannot or do not have the desire to build one, then yes you will have to shell out more money for a gun from TVM or another traditional gun producer. However the quality is so much better than that of any factory gun......If you have some skill with hand tools and patience, then a kit is definitely the way to go. It doesn't take an expert's skill to turn out a decent looking rifle, and you get some valuable experience into the workings of a traditional muzzle loader.Plus you can customize it any way you want. Best of all you save a substantial amount of money doing most of the work yourself.
I fully understand someone wanting to go the factory route if it is their first foray into muzzle loading etc. I can't see spending alot of money on something you may not end up staying with. Its the route I went at first. But eventually if you stick with the hobby you're going to want to own something more traditional and of better quality anyway, so it might behoove you to get the nice gun now.